diary · family · Health · History · women

Nan’s Diary: Raising lost voices

One of the most interesting things I have found when looking back through my Nan’s memoirs is the mentions of other women that flit in and out of the story. This excerpt in particular made me stop and think: ‘At the bottom of the path and on the other side of Belle Hill, there were… Continue reading Nan’s Diary: Raising lost voices

diary · family · History · memoir

Nan’s Diary: Building new foundations

There’s been a bit of a hiatus on the blog. I guess it’s a case of ‘wintering’ when the motivation to write hibernates for a while. I’m pretty sick of all the lies being dressed up as truths in these haphazard pandemic times. I guess people step up or really step down in times of… Continue reading Nan’s Diary: Building new foundations

diary · family · History · memoir

Nan’s Diary: DIY

When my nan and grandad bought their own house after the war, money was tight and so they got stuck into anything that needed doing on the house… ‘When we went to Ashcombe Road, we had had little experience of DIY so it was very new territory. The garage was a tumble down do-it-yourself affair… Continue reading Nan’s Diary: DIY

diary · family · History · Kids · Parenting

Nan’s Diary: Childcare

In Nan’s era, it was assumed once you got married that you would give up work, have children and spend all your days on unpaid childcare and housework. Sounds like pandemic-era Britain! ‘Taking the children out every day, either in the morning or afternoon, didn’t leave much time during the day for washing, ironing and… Continue reading Nan’s Diary: Childcare

diary · family · History · women

Nan’s Diary: Married life in the 1950s

As the coronavirus lockdown continues, and it becomes clear that it is having a disproportionate impact on the lives of women, with warnings of a regression back to the 1950s for many, I thought I’d look further at the actual experience of my nan in the 1950s, who was also bringing up small children around the same age as mine are now. The parallels are stark – particularly the burden of unpaid labour.

diary · family · History · Kids · Parenting

Nan’s Diary: Life at Home

With everyone stuck at home, I’m enjoying the descriptions of domestic life in my Nan’s memoirs. She talks of many things in her daily life as she raised three boys under four. This excerpt is from the time when she was living in a flat within a large country house called Feldemore in Surrey, which… Continue reading Nan’s Diary: Life at Home

diary · family · History

Nan’s Diary: Uncle Peter and Aunt Iris

It’s all a bit crap at the moment isn’t it, so I thought the next excerpt from Nan’s memoirs that I’d share would be in her words ‘a sort of cameo section about Uncle Peter and Aunt Iris…I think they deserve a mention, if only to give a humorous turn to things’. The haggard and… Continue reading Nan’s Diary: Uncle Peter and Aunt Iris

diary · family · History · World War Two

Nan’s diary: The Doodlebugs

I remember my Nan talking to me about this next memory of the Second World War. As a child, it seemed so incredible and now as an adult it still remains unbelievable that this was a part of everyday life: “I am reminded vividly of an episode when I was on holiday at a farm… Continue reading Nan’s diary: The Doodlebugs

diary · family · History · World War Two

Nan’s Diary: Burma – The Forgotten War

On a stranger Remembrance Sunday this year, I’m reading through Nan’s memories of corresponding with my grandad Les when he was posted to Burma during the Second World War. Often referred to as the Forgotten War, the Burma campaign dragged on long after Victory in Europe, in tough conditions far away from home. “I received… Continue reading Nan’s Diary: Burma – The Forgotten War

diary · family · History · World War Two

Nan’s Diary: Rationing

During lockdown, I’ve been enjoying ‘growing my own’ and have cultivated a decent vegetable garden! It made me reflect on food in the war years and how rationing must have affected people. Nan writes about this when recalling her recuperation from appendicitis back in London during the war: ‘It was while I was at home… Continue reading Nan’s Diary: Rationing